STOP Early Journal Content on JSTOR, Free to Anyone in the World This article is one of nearly 500,000 scholarly works digitized and made freely available to everyone in the world by JSTOR. Known as the Early Journal Content, this set of works include research articles, news, letters, and other writings published in more than 200 of the oldest leading academic journals. The works date from the mid-seventeenth to the early twentieth centuries. We encourage people to read and share the Early Journal Content openly and to tell others that this resource exists. People may post this content online or redistribute in any way for non-commercial purposes. Read more about Early Journal Content at http://about.jstor.org/participate-jstor/individuals/early- journal-content . JSTOR is a digital library of academic journals, books, and primary source objects. JSTOR helps people discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content through a powerful research and teaching platform, and preserves this content for future generations. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not-for-profit organization that also includes Ithaka S+R and Portico. For more information about JSTOR, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. 1852.] THE CATHOLIC LAYMAN. 135 aforetime were written for our learning, that we, through patience and comfort of ttie Scripture, might hare hope," &c., 2 Tim. iii. 14 — "Continue in the things which thou has learned, and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them ; and that from a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation, through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doc- trine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works." We trust that the mass of Scriptural evidence to which we have a'oove referred may lead our readers, whe- ther Roman Catholics or Protestants, to the saving con- viction, that the Holy Soryptures are intended, by that God under whose inspiration they were written, and by whose providence they have been preserved, to contain and to present to man that revelation of his will the knowledge of which must lead to their salvation and to his glory ; and that it was intended that the instruction of hia Church and people should be carried on through the means of the Bible ; and we hope that some, at least, may be led by it to value " the book" more than they have ever done — to refer to it as conclusive authority on all points of religion — and, like the noble Bereans of old, " Search the Scriptures daily whether these things are so." THE WHAT TRADITION TELLS US OF BLESSED VIRGIN MARY_No. II. JUSTIN MARTYR, TATIAN, ATIIENAUORAS, THEOVHILUS, IRENf US. In our September number we laid before our readers all the passages we could find in the New Testament where the name of the Blessed Virgin is mentioned ; and as noneof our Roman Catholic correspondents have been able to point out that we have omitted any, we may take for granted thatourlist wascomplete. We found then that the whole number of those passages was very much less than we should have expected ; that several of them are exactly such as the writers would have inserted, if it had been their express object to prevent future ages from carrying their veneration of the mother of our .Lord to excess ; and that nowhere in the New Testament does there occur an instance of the sacred writers either addressing prayers to the Blessed Virgin themselves, or of their exhorting their converts to implore her interces- sion. And we called your attention to the fact that her name is not once mentioned in any of the twenty-one apos- tolic epistles. We do not know in the least how this fact is to be accounted for, if we are to suppose that the sacred writers regarded the Blessed Virgin (as Romish autho- rities do now) as "their only confidence," '-the entire ground of their hope." Certain it is that Roman Catholic bishops nowadays don't think it right to write long letters to their flocks without bringing in the Virgins name. (Since our last remarks were published, for example, a pastoral was issued to the Roman Catholics of Dublin, half of which was taken up with her praises.) We gave insertion to a letter in which a correspondent furnished us with explanations, given by Roman Catholic divines, of the silence of the sacred writers concerning her; but we leave it to our readers to say whether there was one satisfactory explanation among the whole of them. We went on then, in the October number, to examine what tradition tells of the Blessed Virgin. We went through all the genuine remains of what are called the Apostolic Fathers, and we found that the earliest unin- spired Christian writers said just as little (or less) about her than the apostles and evangelists themselves. Her name is certainly not found incessantly on their lips. We are now come to the middle of the second cen- tury — more than one hundred years after the death of our Lord. We pointed out to you, in our last article, that a tradition is but of little value if it cannot be traced nearer than a hundred years to the source whence it claims to be derived. For example, Dean Swift is not dead much more than a hundred years, and was one of the most popular men in Dublin in his day ; and yet a very moderately-sized sheet of paper would contain all the traditions that could be collected in Dublin now about the dean ; and if any one of these traditions were to ascribe to the dean opinions inconsistent with what we know of him through his published writings, no man of sense would attach the least credit to it. However, though we acknowledge that the value of tradition becomes less and less the farther we go from the fountain head, we believe that it will be very useful to continue our examination of what the early Chris- tians wrote concerning the Blessed Virgin ; and, ac- cordingly, we purpose to continue the subject in this and in some future articles: for we shall be enabled to judge, if the worship of the Blessed Virgin was not handed down by tradition, how it did take its origin ; and we shall find reason to believe that Mr. Newman is quite right in maintaining that the Roman Catholic doctrine was not handed down, in its present form, by tradition, but that it was developed, in the course of time, by Christian writers. The hint dropped by one was taken up and expanded by another what was in one man's mouth a mere rhetorical flourish, became in another's a dry statement of facts — until, at last, doc- trines assumed a form which would astonish no one more than some of the very writers whose sayings are cited in support of them. We shall give our readers the means of judging whe- ther this be not so with regard to the doctrine of the worship of the Virgin. And while we intend, in the course of these articles, to lay before our Roman Catholic readers all the passages from the Fathers which the most eminent divines of their church have ever urged in defence of this practice, it will be satisfactory to them to know, that if the result of the examination be to con- vince them that this practice cannot be traced to any apostolic tradition, still they will not have contradicted anything which their church has decided. The first work published by Mr. Newman, on joining the Roman Catholic communion, in effect, gives up tradition as a ground for Romish doctrine, and claims for the church the power of making discoveries in the Christian re- ligion, and of developing doctrines which the Chris- tians of the apostles' days knew nothing about. And since these views of Mr. Newman's have never been condemned by Roman Catholic authorities, but he is, on the contrary, in high favour with the dignitaries of his new church, our readers are safe in concluding that there will be nothing heretical in their believing that the worship of the Blessed Virgin was unknown to the apostles and their converts, however it may have been developed since, some way or other. The first author whose writings we shall examine in his article U Justin Martyr. He was born in Palestine, of heatheii parents — became well informed in the Gre- cian philosophy — was converted to Christianity when of mature age, and then wrote in its defence — was one of the most learned of the very early Christian writers, and eventually suffered martyrdom about the year, A.D., 105. The writings of Justin, which are still extant, are of considerable extent, and contain some important in- formation as to the Church of his time. In particular, he gives some interesting details as to the public services of the Church, and as to the manner in which the sacra- ments of baptism and of the eucharist were then cele- brated. But in no one of his works is there the slightest trace of prayers addressed either to the Blessed Virgin or to any other saint, whether for direct assistance or for intercession. As it is part of our plan, however, to furnish you not only with all that can be urged from the Fa- thers in defence of prayers to the Blessed Virgin, but with any passages we can find where she is extolled, and her praises dwelt upon by the Fathers, we give the only passage of this nature we can find in Justin's writings, only remarking, that a Roman Catholic writer of the present day would scarcely have said so little in the course of '.240 folio pages. Justin, then, in commenting on the fact that our Saviour was born of a virgin, was led to remark how fit it was that, as it was by means of a woman (namely, by Eve's eating the forbidden fruit) that sin entered into the world, so likewise the instru- mentality of a woman should be employed in the plan for our redemption, that so disobedience might be de- stroyed in the same manner in which it was introduced into the world — " For Eve being a virgin, and incorrupt, having received the word from the serpent, brought forth transgression and death : but Mary the Virgin, hav- ing received faith and joy (on the angel Gabriel an- nouncing to her the glad tidings, that the Spirit of the Lord should come upon her, and the power of the High- est overshadow her), answered, Be it unto me accord- ing to thy word. And of her was born he of whom we have shown that so many Scriptures have spoken : he by whom God destroys the serpent, and angels and men resembling (the serpent), but works a rescue from death for such as repent of evil and believe on him." This is the strongest passage in all Justin in praise of the Blessed Virgin ; and you will observe, that the notion of offering prayers to her is not once suggested by if, and that nothing is said of her except what Protestants are ready to admit. It is scarcely necessary to remark, that in this parallel between Eve and the Virgin Mary, Justin merely institutes a comparison suggested by his own ingenuity, and that he does not pretend to be com- municating any doctrine not contained in Scripture, handed down to him by his predecessors. Justin merely makes the remarks which his own reason sug- gested on the facts contained in Scripture; but he does not pretend to be adding any facts of his own to those already recorded in the Bible. This passage from Jus- tin, although it has no doctrinal importance, is interest- ing in an historical point of view, because this compari- son which Justin suggested, between Eve and the Virgin Mary, was one which greatly pleased some of the suc- ceeding Fathers ; and we shall see how some of them improved on it. The folio volume in which the Benedictine editors published the works of Justin Martyr contains besides writings in defence of Christianity, composed by Tatian, by Athknacoras, and by Theophilus, who all like- wise lived in the second century. We shall not weary you by going separately through each of them ; but will cut the matter short by telling you at once, of all three, that there is not a word of the Blessed Virgin in any one of them. Not but that there were opportunities, when any one whose mind had been in the habit of dwelling on the thoughts of the Virgin would not hav« been silent about her. For instance, Tatian compares the habits of the females celebrated by the Grecian poets with those of the Christian virgins. But thete ancient Christian writers not only do not (as liomanists do now) make out opportunities of speaking of the Vir- gin, whatever be the subject in hand, but they are silent about her, even when a natural opportunity for speaking about her presents itself. We shall conclude this article with an examination of those parts of the writings of Irf.N£us which bear os our subject. This eminent Christian writer was born in Asia .Minor, and was one of the most eminent bishops of Gaul at the latter part of the second century. Much of his writings has been lost; and his principal work (against heresies) has only come down to us in a Latin translation, merely fragments of the original Greek hav- ing been preserved. There has been enough left, how- ever, to enable us to pronounce with sufficient certainty on the doctrines taught by Irena'us, and to gather this, at least, from his total silence on the subject, that no prayers were in his time offered by orthodox Christians to the Blessed Virgin or to any other of the saints; for nothing of the kind is to be found in any of hig writings which have reached us. Of passages in his works where the Virgin's name occurs, there are only two or three remarkable enough to be worth quoting — " When Mary was hastening to the admirable miracle of the wine, and wishing, before the time, to participate in the compendious* draught, the Lord, repelling her unseasonable haste, said — Woman, what have 1 to do with thee?" — Adversus Hajreses iii. 18. It is plain that, in this passage, Irenteus speaks of the haste with which our Lord's mother urged him to the performance of the miracle of the change of water into wine as something censurable, and that he did not conceive it necessary to maintain that she was free from all tincture of sin or error. In the other two passages to which we allude, Irenseus takes up the comparison which Justin had instituted, between the Virgin Mary and Eve, only adding of his own some further speculation as to the happy meeting of the two in Paradise. The following are the passages. To avoid all cavil we adopt the translation of Messrs. Beringtou and Kirk, whose work is the storehouse from which modern Romish controversialists draw their citations from the Fathers — " As Kve having Adam for a husband, but being still a virgin, becoming disobedient, became the cause of deatk both to herself and to the whole human race ; so also Mary, having her predestined husband, but being ne- vertheless a virgin, being obedient, became the cause of salvation both to herself and to the whole human race. And thus the knot of Eve's disobedience was untied through Mary's obedience; for what the virgin Eve tied through unbelief, the Virgin Mary unloosed through faith Adv. Hajreses iii. 33. " As she (Eve), through the discourse of a (fallen) angel, was seduced, so as to flee from God, having transgressed his word : so Mary, through the discourse of a (good) angel, was evangelized, so as to bear God, being obedient to his word. And if Eve disobeyed God, yet Mary was persuaded ta obey God, that the Virgin Mary might become the advocate of the virgin Eve. And as the human race was bound to death through a virgin, it is saved through a virgin, the scales being equally balanced — virginal disobedience by virginal obedience." — Adv. Haereses v. 19. The only correction we have to make in the preceding translation is in the word translated advocate, which, there is every reason believe, should rather be trans- lated consoler or comforter. The original Greek is lost, as mentioned above ; but there is little reason to doubt that the word employed must have been a deriva- tive of vrupnicnXcai, that being the word for which the Latin -'advocare" is a constant equivalent. For ex- ample, Tertullian (Cont. Marciou iv. 14) translates the words "to comfort those that mourn" (Isaiah lxi. 3) — " advocare lugentes." And, if this be so, the passage would simply refer to the consolation which Eve would find in seeing the damage repaired which had been caused by her sin, and in meeting with her whose seed had bruised the serpent's head. But let us waive this point ; let us suppose that "ad- vocate" is the exact translation of the word ; and let us grant, moreover, that Ireniuus was in possession of au- thentic information that the Virgin in heaven pleads for Eve, docs it follow that she can hear our prayers, addressed to her while we are on earth ? If we had a brother in a distant country, and even if we believed that he was likely to pray for us, we should have no right to pray to him to offer up his supplication on our behalf: and we find, in point of fact, that whatever be the sense of this rhetorical passage, and whether or not * In this obscure expression Irenseus alludes to a former remark of his. that the ordinary operations of nature, whereby the water which falls from heaven is transmuted by successive changes, first, to the sap of the vine, then to the juice of the grape, and so to wine, were, to the miracle of the change of water I uto wine, compressed Into a compendious form : the same thing being done in a few minutes which, in the ordinary course of nature, requites a whole year. i36 THE CATHOLIC LAYMAN. [December, he thought the Virgin's advocacy likely to benefit Eve, Ihere ia no trace of Irenseus, or any of his contempora- ries, asking her intercession for himself. But it ia moat important of all to observe, that in these two passages Irenseus doea not pretend to de- lirer a tradition. We can see plainly that the invo- cation of the Virgin grew in the church — that it was not handed down. We have seen Justin first draw a -comparison between the injury cansed the world by the Instrumentality of Eve, and the benefits derived through that of Mary : we have now seen Irenseus take up the •ame comparison, and embellish it with some rhetorical remarks of his own. But he does not pretend to be in possession of any new fa'cts not contained in the Scrip- tures ; and, notwithstanding the exalted tone of a few sentences in a large work, he never once alludes to any custom among Christians of asking the Virgin's inter- cession. We shall have to go down to much later writers be- fore we shall succeed in discovering any trace of such prayers; and when we do at length come to them, we Shall find that it is not in tradition that they take their Origin. When_.oap writer ventures to speculate on the dignity to whtclf V\e Virgin is exalted, and the degree Of favour which she probably enjoys, another adds something of his own, and conjectures much as to the value of her intercession; then another prays that God may hear the prayers which lie trusts she is offering lor him ; until at length petitions are directly addressed to her, requesting her intercession or her as- sistance, notwithstanding that there is confessedly no command, either of Scripture or of the Church, that we should offer such prayers, and though there is no pro- mise that God will make such petitions known to her. Whatever be the value of these speculations, we hope, in these articles, by tracing exactly what each writer had learned from his predecessor, to make it appear that they originated in the private judgment of persons more or less eminent in the Church, and not either from Scripture or tradition. We cannot, however, take leave of Irenseus without noticing the illustration he affords how Roman Catholics (while they treat the authority of Fathers as decisive when it makes for them) feel no scruple in rejecting their statements when viiey uu not approve of i'.iem. For want . of any better passage in the writings of the early Fathers, Roman Catholics are very fond of put- ting forward Irenseus's comparison between the Blessed Virgin and Eve, as if it were sufficient to connect with the times of the apostles the adoration of the Blessed Virgin practised in the fifth century. And, yet, we have shown that there is not only no mention in this passage of any practice of invoking the Virgin Mary in the time of Irenseus, lut that, also, the whole pas- sage expresses merely the writer's own views, and not any tradition which he had received from his prede- cessors. But how Roman Catholic advocates would have triumphed if Irenseus had slated, that he had heard, from those who had heard the apostles speak, that the church ought to offer prayers through the me- diation of the Virgin. And, yet, they reject, without ceremony, statements which he does put forward on this very authority. For example, Irenseus tells us that he had received it from those who had heard it from the very hearers of the apostles, that our Lotd lived on this earth to old age, or, as he explains it, to about fifty years of age. One would suppose that this was a point in which tradition was not likely to go wrong; and, yet, the Benedictine editor, iii:ry pro- perly, absolutely refuses belief to this tradition of Ire- nseus, and prefers the received opinion, that our Saviour suffered about the thirty-fourth year of his age. He tells us, that " the reasons which Irenseus gives for his opinion are very weak, and that the argumentisnot better than the rest, that the saint had received this statement from his predecessors ; for that we do npt know who those predecessors were, nor whether they might not have been mistaken, and that one of them (Papias), whom Irenseus names, was a man of but feeble judg- ment." Again, Irenseus strongly maintains the doctrine of the Millenarians, that our Saviour is hereafter to reign on earth for 1 ,000 years ; and about twenty pages from the comparison between Mary and Eve, lie tells us (see Catholic Layman for October, p. 109, note 1), on the authority of those who had heard it from John, the disciple of our Lord, that Jesus had used the following words: — " The days shall come in which there shall be Tines, each vine having ten thousand shoots, and each shoot ten thousand branches, and each branch ten thousand twigs, and each twig ten thousand clusters, and each cluster ten thousand grapes, and each grape •hall produce twenty-five measures of wine; and it Shall come to pass that when any of the saints shall take a cluster, another cluster shall exclaim, I am a better cluster, take me and with me bless God And when Judas the traitor asked the Lord, How shall such creatures be made ? the Lord replied, They shall see who shall come in those days." Notwithstanding this the Benedictine editor has no hesitation in rejecting the Millenarian doctrines, and pronounces them blemishes which the saint contracted from too great veneration for his seniors. We quite agree with the learned Roman Catholic in believing that our Lord never spoke the words here imputed to him, nor any like them ; and we infer that Irenseus lived too long after our Saviour's death to be implicitly believed as authority for ascribing any doctrine to our Lord or his apostles of which the Scriptures are silent. And it is thereby demonstrated, on the admission of Roman Catholics themselves, that we are not warranted in concluding that our Lord or his disciples taught a particular doctrine, because that doctrine was main- tained by a canonized saint of the church.not even though that Father should assert it to have been derived by direct tradition from one of the apostles, and not even though he should have written less than a hundred years after that apostle's death. We shall know, therefore, how far we are constrained to admit state- ments of writers who lived at a greater distance from the aposthjse and who do not pretend that the doctrines delivered '-Hfetiifdwived >n a direct line from them. RULE OF FAITH. (Continued from p. 111.) Following tl:» method which we proposed to ourselves in discussms the question of the Rule of Faith, we shall now proceed to the examination of the arguments by which Roman Catholics endeavour to prove that Scrip- ture, or the written Word, is insufficient without the aid of Tradition, or the unwritten Word. Before, how- ever, entering on this examination, we desire to make a few remarks supplementary to those which we have already put forward on the Protestant side of the question. That Holy Scripture comprises all things necessary to salvation, both as regards faith and morals, is proved by the very nature of its contents. With respect to the objects of our faith, it tells us of the existence and pro- vidential government of God ; of his justice, wisdom, holiness, and power. It tells us, that "God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him may not perish, but may have life everlasting." — John iii. 16. In Scripture, and in it alone, is contained all that we know of the life and death of our Redeemer. There is not one saying or one niirac'o cf his, innumerable! as they were (John xxi. 25), preserved in any authentic record but the canonical Books of the New Testament ('). The Scripture also reveals to us the existence of the third person of the blessed Trinity, and the part which he sustains in the great work of man's redemption. The duties which we owe to the Eternal Father, the Eternal Son, and the Eternal Spirit, respectively, are all clearly laid down in Scripture, and nowhere else. Again, with respect to morals, all the great principles by which man, in his individual and social capacity, should be guided, are simply aud clearly defined. There is, indeed, no formal and elaborate system of ethics; but there are — what, in a practical point of view, is infinitely more valuable living examples, principles exemplified in action, which appeal to the hearts and consciences of every single- minded reader of the Bible. When from the internal evidence afforded by Scrip- ture itself we turn to the testimony of the primitive fjhurch, the grand truth of the sufficiency of the written Word again meets us. We have already reviewed in detail some of the passages of the early Fathers bearing upon this point, and they might easily have been mul- tiplied. As the result of the whole investigation, it appears " that there never yet was any Catholic Father that did affirm in terms, or in full or equivalent sense, that the Scriptures are defective in the recording any- thing necessary to salvation, but that they all unani- mously taught the contrary" ( 8 ). The alleged instances contra vening this assertion we shall presently consider. i mother important decision of the early Catholic Chi, h, on this matter of the sufficiency of Scrip- ture, is preserved to us in the creeds, or summaries of faith, which were then drawn up, and were looked upon as embodying all the vital doctrines of Christi- anity. Now, in these creeds there is not a tittle con- tained which is not either directly, or by necessary consequence, derived from Scripture. Roman Catholics are fond of appealing to Jerome and Augustine as pa- trons of Tradition. Now, let us hear what these Fathers say respecting the Apostles' Creed, which is nothing more than an epitome of the New Testament doctrines. Jerome says — " The symbol of our faith and hope which was delivered by the Apostles, is not written in paper and ink, but in the, fleshly tables of our hearts. After the confession of the Trinity, and of the unity of the Church, Me whole, or every sacrament [i.e., mystery] of the Christian religion, is concluded with the resur- rection of the flesh" ('). Augustine says — "It [the Creed] is short in words, but great in sacraments. It confirms all men with the perfection of believing . . Whatsoever was prefigured in the patriarchs, declared in the Scriptures, foretold in the prophets — of God who was not begotten, of the Son of God who is the only begotten of God, or (1) The absurd stories told in some of the uncanonical gospels do not deserve a moment's serious attention. (2) Jer. Taylor, Dissuasive, p. 192, Oxf. ed. 1836. (3) Hieron. Epist. adPammach. t.iv. p. 323. of the Holy Spirit, *c.— the whole of thit the Crttd briefly contains in itself" (,*). Again, he says — " It ia the Rule of Faith—the short, the certain rule — which the Apostles comprehended in twelve sentences, that the believers might hold the Catholic unity, and con- vince the heretical pravity — the comprehension and per- fection of our faith" (»). The men who penned these passages could hardly have believed the imperfection and insufficiency of the written Word, of which the Creed is but a brief outline. The same may be said of Pope) Leo the Great, who thus writes — " The short and per- fect confession of the Catholic symbol is consigned in so many sentences of the twelve Apostles, is so furnished with celestial ammunition, that all the opinions of here- tics may be cut off with that sword alone" («). Again, the opinion of the ancients, as to the suffi- ciency of Holy Scripture, is expressed by the very term which they employed to designate the genuine worka of the inspired writers, soil, the canonical Scriptures. The word canon (cavvv) properly signifies a line or rule, and is sometimes applied to the tongue of a ba- lanee. , Thus, then, the canonical books forw the Divine rule, by which we ascertain whether we are walking in the straight path oTGod's commandments; the standard by which we conform ourselves to the Divine will; the test by which we examine ourselves whether we are in the faith ( 7 )- Nay, more, the very enemies and persecutors of pri- mitive Christianity bear testimony to the fact, that the Scriptures wltc :hen universally recognised as the sole depositor; nf its essential truths. It was against the doctrines c .itained in Scripture that the Pagan adversarit-s nf irit religion directed their assaults, con- ceiving that it' : i.ey overthrew them, no others remained in reserve. Tnc imiperor Diocletian thought that if he could succeed in destroying the 6oo/cs of the Christians, the victory of heathenism would be complete, believing justly that they were the ark in which the whole of the new religion was deposited. Lastly, so irresistible is the evidence in support of the position that Scripture contains all things necessary to salvation, that Bellarmine himself is forced to admit it, whilst he reserves for Traditioiijfce more recondite doctrines which were suited tty^mt more perfect — "They [the Apostles] preached not to the people all things, but those which were ntcmsary to them, or pro- fitable, but other things they delivered apart to the more perfect." — De Verb. Dei. iv. c. 11. ( 8 ) Moreover, against the Roman Catholic Rule of Faith —Scripture and Tradition, considered as co-ordinate (4) August. Serin. 131. de tempore (al. Semi. 242), t. v. app. 397. (5) August. Serm. 181. detemp. t. vi. app. 2T8. (ti) Leo. M. Ep. 13. (al. 27.) ad I'ululi. August. We are not concerned with the error I, as 't is now generally consi- dered) pervading all the above quotations — namely, that the Apostles themselves conij osed the creed called by their name. It may, however, furnish an additional illustration of the un- certainty of oral Tradition. (7 ) This rule, Ghryso-tom observe?, admits neither addition nor subtraction, otherwise its character as a rule is destroyed. 6 Kaviiiv oire iroooStaiv ours urpaiotaiv £i\tTai, ivfi to xavuv ilvai airoWvcn. — Chiysost. Horn. xii. in Phil. iii. (8) This distinction refers to the famous Soman Catholic theory of the Discijilina Aicani — vi:--, that the Aposttesj.^a addition to the truths which they publicly preached and coat- mitted to writing, communicated to their successors a number of unwritten doctrines, which were to be kept secret from the uninitiated Jews and Gentiles, and from the catechumens of the Church. This theory, which is really borrowed from heathen philosophy (In which the coitmon, or exoteric doctrines, were distinguished from the mere recondite, or esoteric), was adopted by the Church of Rome in later times, in order to ac- count for the perplexing fact of the silence of ecclesiastical antiquity respecting the peculiar doctrines of her creed. These doctrines, we are told, were really held since the days of the Apostles ; but were kept secret, as hidden mysteries, not to be divulged to any but snch as were initiated and duly prepared to receive them. The great expounder of this celebrated theory was Schelstrate, librarian of the Vatican, whose work on the subject appeared in 1080. It is also worth observing, that a sect of ancient heretics (Valentinians) held a doctrine precisely similar to the Roman Catholic theory just described. They main- tained, as we learn from Irenseus (.c. Hter. Lib. i. c. 25), that "Jems in mystery spake to his Disciples and Aposti.s some things in secret and apart, and enjoined them to nansmit those things to them that were worthy." Andwc am turther, from Augustine (Tract. 97. in Johan. t. iii. 738 hat in sup- port of this doctrine the heretics quoted John >. '., the very text made use of, for the same purpose, by Bell me and all other Roman Catholic theologians. Tertullian li i. «ise notices (dePrscscr. Heeret. c. 25) the theory that the oostles kept back some of the truths revealed to them, and ii,a not impart them alike to all Christians. He condemns it in the most pointed manner, applies to it the name of madness (dementia), and regards it as a pure invention of the Gnostics, devised for the purpose of throwing an air of mysterious grandeur around their monstrous fictions, and supported by the grossest misre- presentations of Scripture. He informs us (1. c. cap. 23) that their scriptural proof was based on 1 Tim. vi. 20, the very pas- sage which the Rhemish translators employ to prove that " the whole doctrine of Christianity was given unto the holy bishops to keep, and not to laymen." These striking resemblances between modern Romanism and ancient Gnosticism are well deserving of the serious attention of every reflecting Roman Catholic.